Ask Steven – How many left arm bowlers have taken more international wickets than Trent Boult?

I was sorry to read that Trent Boult was ending his international career. Has any other left arm bowler taken more international wickets, apart from maybe Wasim Akram? asked Bruce McKenzie from New Zealand

You are right to think that Wasim Akram is leading the way: he has won no less than 916 wickets in international cricket – 414 in Tests and 502 in ODI. Trent Boult currently sits in seventh place among left arms with 549, but could still improve as he is still expected to appear in some formats. Boult currently has 317 wickets in Tests, 169 in ODIs and 63 in T20s. Other setters ahead of him are Chaminda Vaas (761), Zaheer Khan (610) and Mitchell Johnson (590), while spinners Daniel Vettori (705) and Shakib Al Hasan (631) are also ahead. Mitchell Starc is currently only four behind Boult, with 545.

Who has had the most innings in the tests, having been thrown on all their visits to the enclosure? What about other methods of dismissal? asked Andrew Browning from England

Only one man has been knocked out in each of the five times he has appeared in Tests – Nottinghamshire runner Sam Staples, who played three Tests in South Africa in 1927-28. Nine people were eliminated twice in the tests and lbw both times; no one has managed three. But Reginald Hands played a Test for South Africa, against England at Port Elizabeth (now Gqerbha) in 1913-14, and was bewildered in both legs. The unfortunate Hands was killed in the First World War; a tribute to him, initiated by his father, indirectly led to the tradition of two minutes of silence to honor someone’s passing.

The record holder in this particular regard is Sri Lankan spinner Milinda Siriwardana, who went nine innings in her five Tests and was knocked out in all of them.
The England Lions racked up 672 against the South Africans last week. What is the highest total against a team touring England outside of a Test match? asked Gerry Latimer from England

The England Lions did indeed score 672 in their innings loss to the South Africans at Canterbury last week, but that won’t be on any record list as it wasn’t a first-class game (both teams have chosen from more than 11 players). If it hadn’t been for that irritation, it would have just happened: the Harlequins (whose cap would soon be made famous by Douglas Jardine) amassed 676 for 8 declared against the West Indians at Eastbourne in 1928. It was something of a 162 for 5 recovery : Kent amateur John Knott hit an unbeaten 261, while our 7 and 8, Reginald Bettington and John Evans, both passed 120. The record by a county is Surrey’s 645 for 9 declared against the New Zealanders at the Oval in 1949, when Jack Parker hit a career high 255.

In Tests, England had 903 for 7 declared against Australia at The Oval in 1938 (Len Hutton 364), and 710 for 7 declared against India at Birmingham in 2011 (Andrew Strauss ended when Alastair Cook was out for 294).
I believe Eoin Morgan’s 17 sixes against Afghanistan is the record for a one-day international. But is it also the most in any one day game? asked James Rowley from England

Eoin Morgan hit 17 sixes in his 148 from 71 for England against Afghanistan at Old Trafford in the 2019 World Cup. This broke the existing record of 16 sixes in an ODI round, shared by Rohit Sharma, A. B. de Villiers and Chris Gayle.

Another man to hit 17 sixes in an inning of List A (one-day senior) cricket: Gerrie Snyman, in his 196 for Namibia against the United Arab Emirates in Windhoek in 2007-08 (it wasn’t an official one-day international match). But one man is safe from both: playing for Western Australia against Queensland in the Australian JLT One Day Cup in Sydney in September 2018, Darcy Short threw no less than 23 sixes in his 257, the third highest innings of all time. A-list game, and Australia’s highest.
Who has bowled the most Tests without ever bowling? asked Abhishek Kunjal from India

It’s probably no big surprise to find a wicket-keeper at the top of this list: Ian Healy played 119 Tests for Australia and never bowled. But the men in second and third place were outfielders: New Zealander Stephen Fleming bowled 111 Tests without ever bowling, and Andrew Strauss 100 for England. Healy’s successor Adam Gilchrist comes next with 96 Tests, ahead of England wicket-keepers Alan Knott (95) and Godfrey Evans (91). Next is Jonny Bairstow, who has gone 87 Tests so far (49 as a designated keeper) without receiving a bowling spell.

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